Electrostatic by Jasper Covey ('18)
The dust precipitator is a device that uses static charges to remove smoke and other suspended particles from the air. The device works when placed in a flow of moving air such as in a smokestack or air purifier. The main components of the device are a set of positive and negative electrodes with a high voltage difference between them. In practical use, the shape and size of the electrodes vary given the type and use of the precipitator, but the simplest is the plate separator. The plate separator consists of a specific arrangement of wires and plates. The negatively charged wires run perpendicular to the flow of the air, parallel to each other, and are separated by some distance. Further downstream in the airflow and behind each of the wires, there are positively charged plates which are parallel with the airflow in the pipe and are aligned behind the negative wires. As a particle enters the device, the dust particles become negatively charged by the high voltage corona discharge of the negative wires. Then, as the particles continue, they are attracted towards the positive plates, where they build up and are thus removed from the flowing air. This is beneficial because it removes any potentially harmful particles like stone dust or smoke from the air.